Heavy metal. It’ll never die. Ever. There are defenders of the faith, every damn where.

Take Accept.

Since their debut album in 1979,  the Germans have been making heavy blinking metal. Big, bold, brash metal. Somewhere in the sweet spot between Priest and Saxon and proudly with its horns up.

No compromise. Balls to the wall.

They’ve stuck out a few singles from the record. The title track was the first (although it’s the second track here) and it was a window into this post-apocalyptic world. It’s classic metal with modern production values and a stadium-sized cock that it’s prepared to swing about.

The thing is brilliant. So is the album.

Look, it might start with a bit of Eastern tinge. As if Wolf Hoffman wanted to prove he was ace, but this is more metal than Rob Halford’s leathers, mate. And speaking of Priest. You half imagine Mark Tornillo is going to break into “Painkiller” at one point, and Andy Sneap produces, as he does with JP (and of course he also does guitarist hokey-cokey there too).

“Frankenstein” gets its hi-tops on and heads for the moshpit, while “Man Up” presents me with an issue. I hate the phrase, I disagree with the sentiment. But Christ, it’s catchy, the scamps.

Everyone excels here. The riffs on “The Reckoning” slash and burn, and so do the ones on “Nobody Gets Out Alive” (we’ll just assume they all do from now on, ok? It’ll save time), and in years gone by it’s a hit single.

There are serious messages throughout “Humanoid” and never more so than on the expansive, almost folk ballad “The Ravages Of Time” and if 11 songs is kind of the perfect length, what it does here is ensure there are no let-ups. No filler. There are no deep cuts that you’ll skip, even if “Unbreakable” is essentially “Denim And Leather” re-written and proud.

“Mind Games” lets its imagination run wild and its fists go higher, and no joke, things get a bit AC/DC on “Straight Up Jack”. It’s fun and the drink is flowing, while “Southside Of Hell” seems intent on showing just about every power metal band how things really get done.

“Humanoid” is wonderful, not because it is groundbreaking, but precisely because it is not. It’s a modern take on the classic sound. So metal that this review should have been 666 words, frankly.

Already this year we’ve had albums from Bruce Dickinson, Priest, and Saxon. You can add “Humanoid” to that list and it belongs. Indeed, it is tough to know which is best.

What you can say with total certainty, though, is this is Accept, nothing less.

Rating 9/10

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